RARA-AVIS: McBain / John D. MacDonald and Ross MacDonald

From: Jack Bludis (buildsnburns@yahoo.com)
Date: 21 Jul 2010

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    McBain was ten years younger than John D. and he virtually invented the police procedural. (God know there was little procedure to Georges Simenon other than an all-but clairvoyant solution to the crime.) I think the age difference helped McBain to be far fresher than John D.

    John D. tried to handle relationships without commitment, something that in the context of the times, I believe, was accurate. Modern female readers consider his sexist.

    I had John D. ranked with Hammett and Chandler for years until I reread some of John D. MacDonald. Nope, not even close, but my opinion is that John D. is as good as, if not better than Ross MacDonald, who never passed up a metaphor or simile, no matter how awful, complex, or unnecessary.

    Chandler got in, got out, and got on with it.




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